Prize money of MAKA trophy raised five-fold

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New Delhi, Aug 21 (UNI) Sports Minister M S Gill today announced a five-fold raise in the prize money of Maulana Abul Kalam Azad (MAKA) Rolling Trophy, given away for Inter-University sports tournaments.

The prize money now goes upto Rs ten lakhs, Rs five lakhs and Rs three lakhs, from the existing Rs two lakhs, Rs one lakh and Rs 50,000, respectively for the first, second and third overall winner Universities.

''Schools, Colleges and Universities are our pool of talent, and the arena where the sports talents are identified, nurtured and brought up to higher standards. The present prize money is a pittance for the Universities,'' he said.

Dr Gill has earlier categorised the University Games as 'Priority Games' and designated Association of India Universities (AIU) as a National Sports Promotion Organisation.

The first prize winning University will receive cash prize and the trophy along with a small replica of the MAKA Trophy for retention by them.

The cash awards will go towards the development of sporting facilities in the universities. President Pratibha Patil will present the MAKA award along with the Rajiv Gandhi Khel Ratna, Arjuna and other awards at Rashtrapati Bhawan on the National Sports Day on August 29.

Named after India's first Education Minister, the Maulana Abul Kalam Azad Rolling Trophy, instituted in 1956 is considered as the symbol of supremacy, in sports for Indian Universities.

The top overall winner university in various categories of open tournaments including the Inter-University Tournaments will be adjudged to receive the MAKA Trophy. The Association of Indian Universities is authorised to make recommendation to the Union Ministry of Youth Affairs and Sports for the award. At present Inter University Tournaments are organised in 18 games for men, 17 games for women and 16 games for both men and women in all eligible 283 university centres throughout India.

The scheme also provides for assistance to the Association of Indian Universities on a decided pattern for inter university tournaments, coaching and training camps for participation of universities teams in national and international events.

UNI MMG AB HT1509

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